Home Exercises For Lower Back Pain

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Lower back pain is a very common problem among adults and most people will suffer from back pain sometime throughout their life. Research has shown that problems related to the back are the most common reason people take time off work in the U.K. Back related problems are also the most common reason people seek treatment with an osteopath.

Lower back pain is often caused by overuse and muscle strains or injury. Other factors that increase your risk for low back pain include getting older, having a family history of lower back pain, sitting for long periods, and lifting or pulling heavy objects.

Regular exercise is one of the best ways of keeping back pain at bay. Even a gentle home exercise program can help decrease low back pain. It may also help prevent re-injury to your back and reduce the risk and severity of disability if you get a back injury.

Below are five simple exercises anyone can do at home without any special equipment to help you look after your back properly and keep you as active as possible.

1. Straight Leg Raises
– Lie on your back with one leg straight and one knee bent
– Tighten your abdominal muscles slightly to stabilize the lower back
– Slowly lift the straight leg up to just above the height of the opposite bent knee and hold 1-5 seconds
– Lower the leg slowly
– Repeat 10 times
– Repeat on the other side with the opposite leg straight and opposite knee bent

2. Knee To Chest Stretch

– Lie on your back with your knees bent
– Raise one leg and pull it up towards your chest as far as possible
– Hold your knee in this position for 1-5 seconds
– Lower the leg back to the starting position
– Repeat 5 times with each knee

3. Pelvic Lift

– Lie on your back with your knees bent
– Slowly raise your buttocks and pelvis off the floor as high as possible
– Hold this position for 1-5 seconds
– Lower your buttocks and pelvis back down to the floor
– Repeat this 10 times

4. Knee Rolls/Swings
– Lie on your back with your knees bent and the two knees/legs touching
– Turn your head to the right
– Turn or roll both of your knees, keeping your feet on the floor, over to the left as far as possible
– Hold for 1-5 seconds
– Return the knees and head to the centre
– Repeat to the opposite side(s)
– Repeat 5 times in direction

5. Back Extension Stretch

– Lie on your front on a firm surface
– Place your hands palm down and the elbows bent under your shoulders
– Now straighten your arms raising your upper trunk off the floor so your elbows are straight
– Keep your pelvis and legs on the floor allowing your back to arch as much possible
– Hold for 1-5 seconds
– Relax your body and return to the starting position
– Repeat 5-10 times

These 5 simple exercises if done regularly will help keep your back and whole spine more supple and less prone to injury. Remember though don’t continue any of the exercises if they cause discomfort or irritate any recovering injury or ache. If ever in any doubt or if your lower back pain is not easing seek professional advice as soon as possible

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